Måneskin: Inspiring the World One Flare at a Time

“Not only is Maneskin a host of formidable talent, it’s also a band with impeccable style and an inspiring message”

You may have heard of Måneskin, the Italian rock band with the Danish name, meaning ‘Moonlight’. And if you haven’t, well, here’s your wakeup call. Not only is Måneskin a host of formidable talent, it’s also a band with impeccable style and an inspiring message. A message that encourages their fans to always be unapologetically themselves, regardless of what the world thinks. And who better to send such a message, than a young band that started their career busking in the streets of Rome and has quickly become a worldwide phenomenon, all because they never stopped being themselves?

Sharing big dreams and a love for music, vocalist Damiano David, bassist Victoria De Angelis, & guitarist Thomas Raggi attended high school together. In 2015 they completed the group with drummer Ethan Torchio, and in 2016 they made it official when they gave their band a name that will, undoubtedly, go down in rock history. And thus, Måneskin was born. From their second place win at X Factor Italia in 2017, to their first place win at Eurovision 2021, Måneskin has not only won the hearts of Europe, but the hearts of the world.

Left to Right: 1. Måneskin busking in Rome, @maneskinofficial Instagram. 2. Måneskin after winning Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest, May, 2021. Image by Peter Dejong.

Whether they won our hearts or stole them, one thing’s for certain; they’re most definitely aware of the power of fashion. Being as renowned for their daring trendsetting as they are for their music, I think it’s important to admire the minds behind the looks that have us Beggin’ for more. Since 2020, stylist Nicolo “Nick” Cerioni, also known for being the co-founder of SUGARKANE STUDIO, as well as being a stylist to numerous other Italian celebrities, is the man we have to thank as we drool over Damiano in bell bottoms. In an interview for VD News, Cerioni said that, when he first began working with Måneskin, he was “very impressed by their professionalism and musical artistry”. Also stating that they have “very, very precise ideas about their stylistic path”, which, is not at all hard to believe, given the confidence they exude.

“We consider fashion as self-expression, and as a way of giving more strength to one’s message” – Damiano David

While Måneskin was serving us looks even before working with Cerioni, since beginning their work with him in 2020 we have seen a number of show-stopping ensembles. Including a couple custom Etro designs made for the Sanremo Festival, as well as for Eurovision. The band was able to freely express many of their ideas throughout the creative process for the designs and were thoroughly happy with the results, as were the audience. For the Sanremo designs, Etro explained that “the group wanted the looks to represent an intrinsic expression of freedom and chose the feather as a symbol”, resulting in beautifully embroidered tulle jumpsuits that certainly made a statement. For the Eurovision looks, they channeled that glam-rock style that we all know and love, resulting in metallic leather vests & flares, embellished with metal studs and crisscrossed motif details to complete the look. Damiano has stated that Måneskin views “fashion as self-expression, and as a way of giving more strength to one’s message”, and they have certainly proven that mindset to be true. If Måneskin were encouraging us to be unapologetically ourselves, while wearing polo’s and khaki shorts, we’d probably feel a bit bamboozled.

Left to Right: 1. Måneskin at Sanremo Music Festival, 2021. Image by Maria Laura Antonelli 2. Måneskin at Eurovision, 2021. Image by Kuba Dabrowski.


Who Inspires Måneskin?


In an interview with Nikkie de Jager for her YouTube, Nikkie Tutorials, Damiano was asked who inspires them as a band. He responded saying that they “take inspiration from the old bands of the 70’s, of course, because they are the hugest example of what a band can actually do.” He then followed up with a list of more recent bands that inspire them. Naming bands like, Arctic Monkeys, Royal Blood, IDLES, and Slaves. – Hmm.. sounds like the creators of Peaky Blinders should add Måneskin to next season’s soundtrack. –

At the top of that list, however, was Harry Styles. “We really like what Harry Styles is doing, in terms of music and also in terms of aesthetic, and fashion, and the message that he sends.”, Damiano stated. Måneskin has also mentioned that Harry Styles is an artist that they would be interested in collaborating with. A collaboration that, I’m sure, the vast majority of us would be in full support of.

Left to Right, Top: 1. Harry Styles for Variety Magazine, 2020, Image by Parker Woods. 2. Jimmy Page at Shepperton Studios, 1974. 3. Harry Styles performing at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards, 2021, Image by Kevin Winter. // Bottom: 1. The Rolling Stones, Image PR handout. 2. Jimi Hendrix performing at Madison Square Garden, 1968, Image by Walter Looss Jr.

Måneskin’s style has been described using terms such as, glam-rock, gender fluid or androgynous, and has even been placed under the umbrella of “New Masculinity”, which is, in short, exactly the opposite of ‘toxic masculinity’. Seeing their style described in these terms, and given that Styles sends a similar message about individuality and the freedom to express yourself, it makes perfect sense that Harry would be such a major inspiration to Måneskin, as does the 70’s rock influence. Similarities to rock legends such as Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, among many others, can be spotted in some of Måneskin’s most iconic looks. On the cover of their latest album, ‘Teatro D’ira’, you can see they may have drawn inspiration from bands like Pink Floyd, or even Fleetwood Mac, creating a very 70’s bohemian style. During many of their live performances and interviews they can often be found in anything from suits, to leather and lace, to harnesses and skin. For Måneskin, style is limitless. As are talent and good looks, apparently *sobs*.

Top Left: 1. Måneskin Teatro D’ira album cover. Image by Gabriele Giussani. // Bottom Left: 2. Pink Floyd. Image by EMI Music Sweden. // Right: 3. Måneskin. Image by Francis Delacroix.


A Journey Through Måneskin’s Music Videos


What about Måneskin’s music video style? I’m glad you asked! From red carpets, to live performances, to interviews, Måneskin never fails to provide us with endless style inspiration, so why would their music videos be any different? With music videos spanning from their earliest video for ‘Recovery’, released in June of 2017, until their most recent music video for ‘I WANNA BE YOUR SLAVE’ which was released in July of 2021, Måneskin has gone through a lot of growth and transformation, and we love to see it.

During the years of 2018 & 2019, many of their music videos were styled by Rebecca Baglini, with costume designers on a few videos as well. The video for song ‘Moriró da Re’, released in 2018, had costume design by Jo Maria Contini, with characters donning some quite fantastical ensembles. From a serpent-man in bone-like armor, to a couple sets of sexy angel wings, to a few heavily jeweled looks, the ‘Moriró da Re’ music video does not disappoint. The ‘L’altra Dimensione’ video, released in 2019, was designed by costume designer Noemi Intino. In this music video, the main character travels to a seemingly different dimension, where he is celebrated amongst people wearing vibrant and jubilant robes and headdresses. Both videos were also styled by Rebecca Baglini, who was the stylist for the music videos of ‘Torna a casa’, ‘Fear for Nobody’, and ‘Le parole lontane’, before Nicolo Cerioni took over in 2020.

Since Cerioni became the stylist for Måneskin, he’s worked with them on three of their latest music videos. From the colorful flared pant-suits of ‘VENT’ANNI’, to the leather and mesh of ‘ZITTI E BUONI’, Cerioni’s styling gives us all the rockstar fashion we desire. The latest music video for ‘I WANNA BE YOUR SLAVE’, features all of the aforementioned styles and more. A must watch if you love lace & ruffles, floral suits, spikes & pearls, leather and a whole lotta BDSM *winks*.


“There is no question, style counts 100% and fashion 0%”

Nicolo Cerioni, Sound Identity Interview

In an interview with Sound Identity, Nicolo was asked how important an artist’s individual style is versus the importance of keeping up with fashion. Cerioni responded stating, “there is no question, style counts 100% and fashion 0%”. The contrast between style and fashion is an important distinction to understand, as an artist’s personal style does not always coincide with what is trending in fashion. In cases like Måneskin or any other musician, their music tells their story and their style enhances the narrative.

Style is unique to every individual, it gives us a glance at who that person is, what they like. If you meet someone for the first time and they’re wearing all black leather, it sends a message. If they’re wearing every color under the sun, it sends a different message. What we choose to style ourselves in everyday is like our costume, it helps to tell our character’s story. Fashion on the other hand, is viewed on a much broader scale. If our style helps to tell our individual story, fashion tells the story of society as a whole. As a stylist, Cerioni has to help his clients send a message through their clothing, so it wouldn’t make much sense to prioritize fashion over style.

Måneskin, 2020. Official Måneskin Instagram.


Because celebrities have such a vast following, they often influence fashion through their personal style. So, what trends have we seen gaining popularity in 2021?


Bell Bottoms


Måneskin definitely loves a good flared pant, and they’re not the only ones. This once popular silhouette has been making it’s comeback as of late and, unlike it’s return in the 2000’s, this time it’s not just a trend for the women. That’s right, we’re going all the way back to the 70’s. Bell bottoms for all!

Left to Right: 1. Måneskin official Instagram. 2. Måneskin for Billboard Italia, 2020.

The 70’s are Back Baby


Flared pants aren’t the only 70’s trend we’ve seen circulating recently. 70’s color palettes, platforms, vibrant, or dare I say groovy patterns, crochet, among many other 70’s trends have been rising in popularity in 2021.

Måneskin, 2020. Image by Francis Delacroix.

Rings & Men’s Nail Polish


These particular trends have been popular amongst rockstars for decades, but lately they’ve been spreading themselves beyond just the edgy daredevils we might expect to see them on. Celebrities such as Brad Pitt, Jason Momoa, Keanu Reeves, among others have been seen sporting nail polish, and the fun doesn’t end there. Funky nail art has been trending amongst women recently and it seems that men have decided they wanna be included in all the excitement. While in the past we may have seen just a single, solid color, now we’re seeing many men going for fun designs and crazy prints.

Damiano David, VENT’ANNI music video, 2020.

Also, Men in Dangly Earrings


We’ve seen men in earrings in the past, oftentimes it was a set of studs or a solo dangle, but lately many men have been donning dangles on both ears and, honestly, I’m here for it.

Damiano David at Eurovision, 2021.


Music has the ability to inspire those who consume it, and clothing has that same power. Combine the two so that they enhance one another, and you practically have an unstoppable powerhouse. Add in an inspiring message and you’ve got a band called Måneskin.


Måneskin for the I WANNA BE YOUR SLAVE music video, 2021.


Måneskin has never been shy about constantly finding new ways to express themselves, without feeling the need to apologize for it, so it’s no surprise that the message they want their fans to gain from their music is to be yourself without fear of judgement. Their Eurovision song ‘ZITTI E BUONI’ discusses just that, and it’s the reason they use the name Marlena in many of their songs. Måneskin has said that Marlena is the personification of being confident, of the freedom to express yourself. She’s an “ideal and also a value”. So, whether it be through clothing or action, Måneskin challenges societal norms and the judgements of others, and they encourage their fans to do the same.


References:

Rosalía: Shaping Music and Art Through Costume

Art is holding the music in the shape of costume design. 

Rosalía‘s Instagram feed is a source of fashion inspiration for the younger generations with her aesthetic choices, streetwear garments, iconic golden accessories, and extreme nail art. 

Rosalía has charmed an international audience with her creativity and unique music. She is bringing her Spanish roots into international pop culture, and she is not stopping at the musical aspect. The costumes for her music videos transmit a powerful message; she creates an image of a confident and strong woman. Rosalía has come to make us fall in love with her meaningful art, bringing with her the noble cause of feminism. 

During this article, we are going to go through three of her music videos that were made for the songs named “Juro Que,” “DI MI NOMBRE,” and “A Palé.” I chose these particular videos because they are not connected; they are from three different albums to show the consistency of Rosalía’s aesthetic choices.

We start by analyzing the music video for the song called “Juro Que,” released through Sony and Columbia Records on 23th of January 2020. Fashion stylist Laura Vandall is responsible for the costume design. When I encountered this masterpiece, I immediately felt the necessity of writing about it. With strong and pure colors such as red, blue, and green, the 70’s look, and the chosen typography for the title, the music video is an attribute to Pedro Almodovar’s aesthetics. The inspiration is undeniable and gracefully executed.

Vídeo de la nueva canción de Rosalía, “Juro que”
Starting photogram from the musical video Juro Que, Rosalia 2020.

Rosalía‘s powerful presence leads the entire video. As I previously commented, during the entire video, the color palette is an Almodovar attribute. Opposite strong colors working on the set and costume design. All the costumes are monochromatic, working perfectly with the set design. 

We can appreciate the use of costume as a measure of time. While she has three costume changes, her lover is always wearing the same garments. This tool also tells the spectator about this particular character’s condition: he is in prison. She is gradually becoming a stronger character. She starts the video wearing a blouse and on top of it, a corset and a nylon sports jacket, all in pink tones. She is presented with a girly but stylish look, not childish but sexy instead, as Rosalía usually is. She is mixing styles, creating an atemporal look. We can compare this costume with the one for the video “Di Mi Nombre: (chapter 8: Extasis)

Photograms from the musical video Juro que, Rosalia 2020.

The music video “Di Mi Nombre” was released on October 30th, 2018, as the third single from her second studio album El Mal Querer, produced by Rosalía and Guincho Studio. The costume design was made by the fashion stylist Soki Mak. It reminded me of the classical telenovelas from Central America and Spain. The use of shoulder pads and a big belt on Rosalía’s waistline reflects an approach to the 70’s aesthetics. When Rosalía is in the room, surrounded by religious images, she is creating a confusing scene. She wears colors of purity, but the lyrics of the song and her movements are telling something else.

When she moves towards a new room in the house, we can see the dancers as disturbing creatures. They appear to be classical dancers, wearing pink tights, a classical and basic pink leotard, and dancer’s shoes. We can appreciate the same concept as in Rosalía’s character. The disturbing element, in this case, is the way the dancers are wearing their hair: loose and on their faces. We can conclude that these creatures represent the danger the song is narrating, the deep obscurity inside Rosalía. 

Photogram from musical video Di mi nombre, Rosalia 2018.

Rosalía’s and her team are inspired by classical art. We can appreciate the similarities between the music video’s photogram and Francisco Goya’s painting, called La Maja Vestida.

This musical video differentiates from the other two selected videos on the way it is filmed. Just one take, with the same costume during the entire song. This simplicity can trap the spectator and follow the story easily.

Let’s go back to the music video for the song “Juro Que.” During the music video, we can appreciate Rosalía’s growth, passion and love for the prisoner increases. It consumes her, and we can tell because of the contrasting colors appearing with more intensity. The next costume has yellow as the predominant color, contrasting with the green background, bringing light to the sad encounter between Rosalia and her lover. Finally, she exteriorizes her suffering and passionate love for the prisoner by wearing red in a blue surrounding. Do not forget that the red elements were present all along with the music video on the set – on the couch, lamps, curtains – she is embracing this powerful color to make a statement: 

“If you don’t get out I’ll get in

If you don’t get out I’ll get in

I’ll rob a bank tonight

And that they’ll take me to prison”

Juro que, rosalia 2020.
Photograms from the musical video Juro que, Rosalia 2020.

Finally, the last video we are analyzing is “A Palé,” released through Sony Music on November 7th, 2019. Rosalia and her sister Pilar Vila were in charge of the general aesthetic. From an visual point of view, the video is an ode to ugliness. Rosalía and her filming crew are triggering the spectator by creating a piece with odd images. Once more, Rosalia is making direct references to her origins. She is showing us her childhood landscapes of pallets (the meaning of the song’s name)

The video’s first image is a direct inspiration from another Francisco de Goya creation: A Portrait of the Duchess Alba de Tormes. Both Rosalía and fashion designer Palomo Sapin (who is responsible for the costume design of the video) “breath common elements and want to trespass frontiers through their creations,” as is perfectly stated in Vogue’s article by Tatiana Ojea.

“Since the day I was born

I carry a star

Know I don’t owe it to nobody

And it only protects me”

A palé, rosalia 2019.
A Palé»: escucha aquí la nueva canción de Rosalía
Photogram from the musical video A palé, Rosalia 2019.

A change of rhythm in the song takes us to the next scene. Now, we are at the center of a mass production fabric. Everything is clean, with a cream color palette. The estrangement feeling appears when we see Rosalia from a closer shot when we can appreciate the characteristic of Frida Kahlo’s unibrow and the golden teeth. 

The third scene is creating a dream-like image with the costume. We are in an open industrial space in the middle of the night. Rosalia is running, letting the beautiful and soft fabric of her dress dance behind her too. With this dress, she becomes a mythical creature of the night, flying around the industrial space. 

The last scene has a nude palette, with a costume that reminds us of the Kardashian’s aesthetics, but without loosing the connection to the fabric and the mass production concept. The dancer’s costume is bringing texture to the screen. The workers became part of the fabric; they are the material, and they are the product that is being produced.

Photogram from the musical video A palé, Rosalia 2019.

Last Reflections

Before finalizing the article, I would like to bring to light the title of costume designers for music videos. While I was researching to this piece, I often read the stylist concept instead of a costume designer. We cannot deny the existing connection between the world of music and the world of fashion. But do not forget, the music video is an audiovisual product that serves the purpose of representing the music and helping the spectator interpreting the song’s essence. It is not only the musicians’ brand represented, but it is also about creating characters of a different world that needs to be compressed into less than 5 minutes. Costume designers need to be properly named and credited in music videos.


Reference List

https://doblejeinforma.wixsite.com/dobleje/post/la-inspiración-estética-de-rosal%C3%ADa

https://www.vogue.es/moda/articulos/rosalia-a-pale-videoclip-referencias

https://www.vogue.es/celebrities/galerias/rosalia-vila-look-estilo-marcas

https://www.josetiradoad.com/ROSALIA-Juro-que

https://www.harpersbazaar.com/es/cultura/ocio/a24439735/rosalia-nueva-cancion-videoclip-di-mi-nombre/

http://repositori.uji.es/xmlui/bitstream/handle/10234/184990/TFG_2019_VillaescusaLage_Carmen.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

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How TikTokers Pale in Comparison to Tim Burton

A popular trend on TikTok has creators showing off their fashionable closets by assembling outfits based on their favorite director’s iconic aesthetic. An exciting part of this trend is seeing TikTokers calling attention to the lack of diversity in a director’s work, while showing what it would look like if more people of color were cast. 

Tim Burton’s film’s aesthetic has inspired many TikTok videos that led me to realize most of his fans have a misunderstanding of the fashion in his films. Even though his casting lacks color his costume design definitely does not. An element TikTokers are getting right is Burton’s “pale” black and white gothic aesthetic highly criticized because it is supposedly used as an excuse for him to continue casting pale actors who “look that part”.

These Burton-inspired TikTok videos are not completely off the mark. Many of the creators have been inspired by A Corpse Bride, set in the Victorian era. Burton IS known for using Victorian and Gothic influence in many of his films. 

Women’s fashion changed throughout the Victorian period. The beginning was marked by high necks, long skirts/dresses, and bonnets — very prudish and modest. Tiktokers that take inspiration from Corpse Bride choose the easy route of wearing a wedding dress like the iconic corpse bride, Emily.  However, I would love to see a TikToker more inspired by Victoria or Victor’s classic Victorian costumes, but with a modern twist on the modest Victorian silhouette style .

Modern Gothic fashion is generally dark and gloomy clothing that contrasts with pale makeup. Think black lace, layered chain belts or necklaces, and influences from the occult — perfect attire to wear to a picnic at a graveyard or a meeting with a coven. Some TikTokers attempt to add their own elements of this in their fashion choices for this trend, but they tend to end up looking more like they work at HotTopic and not the star of a Burton film.

Although Burton has Victorian and Gothic elements in his costume and set designs, TikTokers often forget that his aesthetic is largely Camp. Camp fashion is deliberately exaggerated and avante garde, typically for humorous effect. Can’t picture Camp? Remember Lady Gaga’s four spectacular costume changes at the 2019 Met Gala? She epitomized Camp.

How do these different fashion styles fit together for Burton’s filming style? Let’s take a walk down a “Film Studies 101” glossary through the lens of  German Expressionism as characterized by highly stylized sets that dramatize a  character’s internal state of mind.

Imagine the cobweb-filled, ruinous Gothic castle where Edward from Edward Scissorhands resided. The neglected setting was a reflection of Edward’s empty and lonely life without his creator. 

Using modern Gothic elements, the iconic costume designer, Colleen Atwood, dresses Edward in a leather one piece accented by belts and loops. These design choices represent how physically constrained and constricted he is with his scissor hands. This also makes his Scissorhand character stand out among the regular suburbanites who reject him based on how he looks and dresses.

Another subtlety in design is Edward’s hair. When his creator was alive, Edward’s hair was smooth and combed through. When his creator died, his hair became wildly unkempt. How could someone with scissor hands comb their hair by themselves? To the outside world, his hair is a sign of his otherness and neglect.

In contrast, when Edward begins to be accepted by his neighbors, he gives them wacky, zany haircuts. These hairdos are an important detail for TikTokers to replicate because many of them style their hair messy like Edward’s. They should be reminded to pull more inspiration from the creative hairstyles donned by other characters.

As with Edward Scissorhands, utilizing costume choices to represent the inner world of a character is an element TikTokers should incorporate more — if they decide to stick with a gloomier aesthetic. They could even create a backstory for why their character wears a particular outfit — one that reflects that character’s inner-turmoil.

Burton uses highly stylized archaic Gothic and Victorian aesthetics to contrast with modern-day, ridiculously bright and colorful, Campy worlds. This is where the TikTok trend goes off course. In Burton’s world, dark and gloomy cannot exist without Campy costumes and colors. 

The mundane suburbia outside of Edward’s castle in Edward Scissorhands perfectly contrasts with his costume design. This heightens society’s distaste for him and their feeble attempts at transitioning him to their “normal” world. This point is exaggerated with his new family dressing him up in “regular” men’s dress attire — making Edward look more ridiculous.

I am not asking TikTokers to create an elaborate backdrop or background characters to contrast with their outfit. But if they decide to do something that lacks prominent colors,  they should not create a design that is equally bland and simple. Choose that funky, outdated sweater with the hole in the collar. Not the chiffon top that reminds one of the Changeling.

Because of his heavy Goth and Victorian influences, the misconception of Burton’s costume design is understandable. However, his movie’s plots often surround ”strange and peculiar” characters dressing for an out-of-the-ordinary occasion. Hopefully, this is a long-lasting TikTok trend that evolves to a more accurate portrayal of Tim Burton’s iconic aesthetic. Looking tired and pale while posing to Danny Elfman music does not mean one has got it right. Either way, showcasing more diverse fashionistas and their wicked Burtonesque outfits is a trend that I’ll never get bored of.

Edward Scissorhands is a drop in the bucket for all of the colorful examples that can be pulled from Burton’s filmography. I’ll return with Batman Returns in the second installment of this series!


Follow Ruby Tyler on Instagram: @rubyxx_cube